On October 25, several Free Syrian Army (FSA) groups agreed to join the so-called National Army under command of the Turkish-backed Syrian Interim Government, according to Turkish sources.
The agreement was reportedly reached during a meeting between Turkish officials, representatives of the Syrian Interim Government and the FSA in the Turkish city of Kilis.
For now, only the Turkish-backed Sultan Murad Division and al-Shamiyah Front agreed to join the National Army, according to Syrian opposition sources.
According to the agreement, the two groups will hand over all their weapons, ammunition and vehicles to the command of the National Army.
The new Turkish-backed National Army should see the light after 2 months if the agreement is taken seriously. However, previously many FSA groups have made dozens of attempts to establish a joint army with no success what so ever.
Turkey is likely planning to use the new National Army to fight the Kurdish Democratic Party (PYD) and the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) inside Syria. Moreover, the united force could strengthen the position of Turkey and the Syrian Interim Government in the upcoming negotiations with the Syrian government.
Meanwhile in Idlib governorate, opposition sources reported on October 25 that the Turkish Army begin building fortifications west of Afrin city in the northern Aleppo countryside.
The city is controlled by the Kurdish-dominated Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
— Christian Turner (@CombatChris1) October 24, 2017
Furthermore, the Turkish Army reinforced its troops in the northern Idlib countryside with 65 military vehicles, and over 75 soldiers. The reinforcements entered the northern Idlib countryside on October 23 and 24.
The recent developments in the Turkish-held areas in the northern Aleppo countryside and northern Idlib countryside could be linked to the latest statement of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Back on October 24 Erdogan said that the Afrin city issue is the next priority of the Turkish government meaning that Ankara may launch a military operation to retake it from Kurdish militias.